Be My Valentine
Valentine’s Day is said to originate in the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, an annual fertility celebration on February 15. The Pope recast the pagan festival as a Christian feast day sometime in AD 496, declaring February 14 to be St. Valentine’s Day. Our modern day of love probably got its name from ancient Rome as well. Emperor Claudius II sent two men to their deaths on Feb. 14 of different years during the 3rd century. Both men were named Valentine, one was canonized by the Catholic Church, and tradition holds, St. Valentine’s Day was picked to honor him.
Valentine’s Day wasn’t associated with romantic love until the 14th century when English poet Geoffrey Chaucer linked the tradition of courtly love with St. Valentine’s day.
In the US, Valentine’s Day cards were imported from England and quite costly, or they were written by hand and embellished with lace, ribbon and paper. Sometime in 1847, Esther Howland, known as the mother of American Valentines, began to mass produce them with paper and lace from England, where giving and receiving Valentine’s Day cards was a well-established custom. Her idea was a success, and today 190 million Valentine’s Day cards are given each year, counting school children’s cards the number rises to one billion.
Valentine’s Day is a favorite holiday at the Cottage, stop in and find that one-of-a-kind gift for your special valentine…